Monday, June 24, 2013

Frugal Accomplishments had company this week, and that means I haven't kept a running track of much.  We've been having too much fun!  Here are a few frugal things I can remember:

Rather than having our visitors stay in a hotel (which was never a consideration) we made room for them here.  We do not have a guest bedroom, so what we did was this:  Our bed is a queen size, and we gave them that bedroom/bathroom, since it's the most private.  Daughter has a full size bed, so we moved into her room.  We also have a twin mattress, which we planned to bring up and put in her room on the floor, but she tried sleeping on a really thick blanket that we have, folded several times into a pallet.  She said it was perfectly comfy, and it saved us dragging out that mattress.  Everyone had a place to sleep, and it worked out just fine.

We went fishing as a family, and caught five trout.  We had a 'fancy dinner' of trout, rice, spinach and asparagus from the garden, homemade kimchee, home grown sweet corn from the freezer and a homemade lemon meringue pie with a very tough homemade crust (everything but the crust was good!)  Since my FIL doesn't care for fish, I also opened a jar of home-canned corned beef hash, which he really liked.

I made blueberry scones, an apple pie, and the stuff mentioned above.

We ate breakfast and 'lupper' each day, a combination lunch/supper meal around 2:00 or 3:00.  There were snacks available if anyone got hungry in between, but overall, this worked better.  When we were eating out, we could take advantage of the less costly lunch menus, and when we were eating in, it meant I was only preparing one big meal and all those dishes and such. 

When we were out running around having fun, we packed a cooler and an ice water dispenser and took snacks from home to save both time and money. 

We did go out for some meals, but to help with cost we checked places ahead of time and joined their 'fan clubs' if they had them.  We were able to print coupons then for a percentage off the total bill for some places.  We drank water mostly, instead of paying for sodas in restaurants.  On one night, when everyone wanted pizza, we used a coupon and ordered it as carryout to eat at home, saving delivery fees, tip and costs for salad/drinks/etc.

I had done some pet sitting for a neighbor, who gave me a gift card to a local restaurant.  It was not too far from the airport, so we went there for breakfast the morning of their departure.  Before we went, we joined their 'fan club' and received a coupon good for four of their huge muffins, which we brought home.  I will wrap and freeze those for later.

I....think I used some coupons.  I'm not positive.  I didn't do much shopping at all, because we were so busy visiting. 

We picked spinach, lettuce, asparagus and green onion tops from the garden.

Since the plants are becoming more established, we've changed our watering schedule for the garden, and we've also taken advantage of some afternoon rains that allowed us to skip watering on some days.

I did have to pick up some rabbit feed, and while we were there we gathered some free 'drop' hay for the rabbits as well. 

I received three big bags of really lovely clothing from a friend.  One for me, and two for daughter.  We are truly grateful!

We stocked up on rice at the LDS cannery - $12 for 25 pounds of extra long grain rice.

We went out to dinner to celebrate our wedding anniversary...and used both a groupon and a coupon for a free kids meal for Daughter (yes, she went with!).


Anonymous said...

I love reading your blog entries! They seem doable for us "laymen" who do not have a garden or have not been a "prudent homemaker" for years on end. Thank you for being so down to earth! Would you mind posting your recipe for homemade kimchi? Does it smell a whole lot thanks to the fermenting process? Smiles! -Mari

Sheila said...

Our kids have accompanied us on many anniversary meals! Now they are 16 and 13, and we can go out by ourselves, which is nice, but we had them because we wanted to be with them! Happy Anniversary!

Cathy said...

It sounds like you had a great visit! I am amazed at how you were able to still be frugal while having visitors. I have a lot to learn from you.

Glad to know it was visitors keeping you busy and not the wild fires. I was afraid you may have had to evacuate when I didn't hear from you this week.

Laura said...

Mari, my DH is from Hawaii, and kimchee there is not quite the same as the stuff I've purchased in the Korean markets..just FYI. I cheat, and use a packet of kimchee spices, put out by a company named NOH. All you have to do is mix a gallon of water with a cup of salt, add 5 pounds of washed and cut (one inch pieces) napa cabbage. You submerge the cabbage (also called won bok) in the salt water overnight, then in the morning you drain it, rinse, then add the packet of seasoning and pack it tightly into jars. Put a lid on the jars (two quart jars will do it) and let them sit out on the counter for 24 hours. Then they go in the fridge. It's not as spicy/strong as authentic kimchee, but we love it, and eat it all the time. I will also say that over time, I've gotten to where I just eye it. I still measure salt and water, but if I use a smaller head of won bok, I just add less of the powder. Hope that helps!

Laura said...

Sheila, I'm glad to hear we're not the only ones to take our kids on those 'special' dates. We like being with her too, and we're far from family, and it just seems to work for us.

Laura said...

Cathy, thanks for your note! The fires that are near us are contained now and we are mostly just dealing with smoky air. We really did have a great time with my in-laws. They are easy guests, for sure!

I know I owe you an email - so sorry!


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